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The photo below, provided by John Holms, shows a visit to Auckland by HMY Britannia in 1974 with MLs, port and starboard. On the port side was Olphert’s ML before it went back south to Wellington and a month or so later it had to be beached somewhere on the South Island because of the pounding it took attempting to get to Waitangi after the Commonwealth Games. Three reservists from Ngapona were on Olphert’s ML it at the time, including yours truly and also a reservist who went on to become a Radio New Zealand broadcaster on Tongan affairs as well as radio broadcaster for Tongan Radio at the First Rugby World Cup in 1987. Who remembers Henry Te’hua?


News from Te Kiwi Māia (The Courageous Kiwi) – a new charitable trust, established by RNZN personnel.  TKM’s purpose is to provide rehabilitation, respite and recovery for NZ Defence Force personnel and first responders, who have sustained physical or psychological injuries as a result of their role in safeguarding and caring for New Zealanders. Our goal is to secure a facility where we can provide the support that is so desperately needed by the organisations listed below.  To create brand awareness and raise funds, we have had a T-shirt designed by the very talented Royal NZ Air Force Corporal, Renee Thyne (@artbyreneethyne). “My idea for the design was to promote mental wellness. The helmets represent the heads of our responders and the heart not only represents th...


The Ngapona Assn has been offered a number of maritime related books by the late Jim Paltridge for disposal. If you are interest, please email your bid by return email to Jerry Payne giving the title and your $ bid. Bids close on 7th August 20. The judge’s decision is final and no correspondence will be entered into. Books will be available for collection at the Ngapona AGM on 9th August at the Birkenhead RSA. Otherwise post and packaging will be your care. TITLE                                         LATEST BID Warships – Royal Navy – Ships at War – The Great War – Wars...

NZ sailor brandished weapon at comrade after live firing exercise

From A Kiwi sailor brandished a gun at a fellow Naval rating after live firing training on a weapons range. The incident happened on April 5, 2019, at the Royal New Zealand Navy’s Tamaki Leadership Centre on the Whangaparāoa Peninsula, north Auckland. The circumstances leading up to the incident are not yet publicly known but will be subject to a wider NZ Defence Force investigation. Stuff began inquiries into the incidentearly in 2020 but an ongoing investigation into one of the individuals meant the Defence Force did not comment on the nature of the incident until Friday. A Defence Force spokeswoman confirmed the two sailors become embroiled in a dispute at the end of routine firing training. The quarrel happened after the weapons were cleared, meaning there were no...

Whangārei woman Chanel Ruri among first crew on Navy’s largest ever ship Aotearoa

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Taranaki brewery creates all New Zealand beer for commissioning of Navy’s newest ship

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Diver’s training death: Defence Force pleads guilty in Zachary Yarwood case

From New Zealand Herald The Defence Force has admitted responsibility for the death of a diver during a late-night training exercise. This morning in the Auckland District Court, the NZDF accepted the case against it over the death of Napier sailor Zachary Yarwood in March 2019. Lawyer Samantha Turner, on behalf of the NZDF, entered a guilty plea to one representative charge of failing to ensure the safety of employees. Judge Ajit Swaran Singh acknowledged the presence of Yarwood’s family in court. The Navy able communications technician died after a night-time dive at the Devonport Naval Base. He was 23. He was diving in about 6 to 8 metres of water on March 25, about 10pm, during advanced training. Following an investigation, WorkSafe filed the representative charge against the NZD...

Winner of The Navy Club Trophy for BCT 20/01

Ordinary Steward Teaukutai Cook has been awarded The Navy Club trophy for BCT 20/01


HMS Leander was built in His Majesty’s Dockyard Devonport, England, being the name ship for a class of light cruisers. Leander was laid down on 8 September 1930, launched on 24 September 1931 and commissioned into the Royal Navy on 23 March 1933. The ship was acquired by New Zealand in1937, on loan; along with a sister ship HMS Achilles, to replace HM Ships Dunedin and Diomede, respectively. On 13 July 1943, Leander was with Rear Admiral Walden Lee Ainsworth’s Task Group 36.1 of three light cruisers: Leander and the US ships Honolulu and St. Louis. The task group also included ten destroyers. At 01:00 the Allied ships established radar contact with the Japanese cruiser Jintsu, which was accompanied by five destroyers near Kolombangara in the Solomon Islands. In the ensuing Battle of ...


Jubilee Dock was a floating ‘dry’ dock used to lift ships up to 17,000 tons out of the water for maintenance. Built in England for the Wellington Harbour Board, our new Jubilee Dock was 178m long, 36 m wide and could lift ships displacing 17,000 tons. Two Dutch tugs undertook the record 22,000km tow, via the Suez Canal, which began 15 July 1931. The dock’s 11-man crew lived on board. Excitement grew as the dock neared. Wellingtonians could accompany it from the Heads by ferry for 1s 6d, or view it from the air for £1. Thousands more watched from the shore. The dock entered the harbour on the afternoon of 28 Dec 1931 and anchored that evening. Next morning it was moved to a purpose-built dock near Aotea Quay. Later that day it slipped its temporary moorings in a northerly gale b...

ON THIS DAY Tragedy off Normandy

On 20 July 1944, Royal Navy destroyer, HMS ISIS, was on an anti-submarine patrol off the Normandy landing beaches when she was rocked by three massive explosions. She sank in minutes taking 155 officers and crew with her including seven New Zealand sailors.The 20 survivors who were picked up the following morning claimed German human torpedoes (Neger) had inflicted the carnage. However the Admiralty officially lists the cause as a mine that subsequently set off explosions in the ship’s magazines. Over 10,500 New Zealand men and women served in our Navy over the course of World War II. The sinking of HMS ISIS represented the third largest loss of life for New Zealand sailors in a single action during WWII after the 150 who perished when HMS Neptune went down in December 1941 and the 22 who ...

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